Sen. Chris Coons said Friday he has supported President Donald Trump's initiatives to even the playing field between the United States and China, but he is concerned that the ongoing trade war, including a new round of tariffs announced Thursday, will harm America's trade and relations with its allies.
"China has been ripping off our inventions and intellectual property for decades and forcing our companies to transfer technology in a way that has helped fuel their rise," the Delaware Democrat told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "What Trump got wrong was to first take the club of tariffs and swing it at our closest allies, at Canada, at Mexico, at all of our vital allies in Europe and Asia before taking that tool to China."
Meanwhile, the president has been "distancing" the nation's allies, and that has left the country in a weaker position.
'His bold move now to add $300 billion in Chinese consumer goods to the goods subject to tariffs had a big effect on the market yesterday," said Coons."I think we all need to remember that tariffs are taxes."
Coons, who backs former Vice President Joe Biden, also said during the interview that Biden was "genuinely taken aback" by the attacks on ex-President Barack Obama during Wednesday night's debate.
"I frankly think what we should have heard on the stage in Detroit is how we are all united in advancing health care at a time when President Trump and Republicans in the Senate are trying to take away health care, take away pre-existing condition protections for millions of Americans," said Coons.
The senator also discussed the president's newest sanctions on Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, saying that he's concerned about the lack of open channels that would allow U.S. diplomats and the military to avoid conflict with Iran.
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